Followers, Followers, Who Has More Followers
Sometimes this whole social media, I have so and so many followers and therefore what I say is valid is a bit hard to take. It is easy to get caught up in quantification, especially in the dominant linear thinking culture left over from the 20th Century. More is better. Bigger is better. Our mantra has been, “More, more, more.” As the appreciation of networks and communities co-evolves with increasing respect for and value assigned to information, quality and meaning will replace quantity and price as how we define success what attributes we promote.
Social media reflects the expanding information culture as well as the now fading fascination we have had with material accumulation. Who you know is gradually replacing what you have in our formulas of how we assign value.
Good small networks of well-connected people are more “valuable” than large networks of bozos. We all know this implicitly. But sometimes we forget. We forget this because reality is always somewhere in between these “pure” states.
As I write this piece, the Twitterverse is abuzz with talk about fake Twitter followers as it relates to politics. This is very opportune timing for me as I’ve been researching this very article about the whole concept of having followers for over a month .
Yes you want followers. But most of the follower hubbub is hooey. You may quote me on that.
Followers, Subscribers, Readers, and Fans
Everyone has their 15 minutes of fame, right? Well, the flip side of this fame is having 17 minutes of having followers. Most people enjoy it when others appreciate who they are and what they do. At the most basic level this appreciation maps onto families and comprises the reinforcing support system of friendship.
Influence factors in this mix as no one will follow what you write or become involved with what you report about your life or experiences, if they are not invested in you. This is true no matter whether the investment comes from subscribers, readers, identified followers, friends or family.
Google has invested untold amounts of money in refining their search algorithms in order to present the most closely matched, valid data from the digital stream in response to individual queries. Continual efforts to outfox these algorithms and secure top page rank has led to a full spectrum of methods to game the system. Buying followers, comment spam, multiple accounts from single ips, all the way to malware injection into databases are employed to achieve false influence and accuracy scores. The currently hyped method of finding out what your “score” is for the good bad and the ugly of fake followers is found on StatusPeople.
INCREASE YOUR INFLUENCE
- Develop real relationships. People can tell when you are legitimately interested in what they have to say. If you show real interest on multiple occasions, you are on your way to developing real relationships. Networking and attending conferences helps too.
- Cleanse your follower streams of fake followers. I have used Twit Cleaner in the past to assist with this process. If someone follows me who has no picture, no followers, no bio… you get the idea, I ban them.
- Participate in communities. Find communities on Facebook or elsewhere on-line that you might be able to commit to for long periods of time and engage in them.
- Write what is read. Check your analytics to see what things you write about are being accessed over and over again. Write more about this topic and develop a real level of authority on your subject. This is a big part of influence.
- Show your passion. Being influential on a subject in which you have little interest is a rarity.
- Be sincere. Never ever try to be something you are not. Don’t ever lie to your readers.
- Interconnect your social media to your blog. Make sure links to your social media streams present, easily viewed, and accurately set up on your blog.
- Interconnect your blog to your social media. Post enticing snippets of your blog articles on your social media streams such as Twitter and Facebook. Make sure this isn’t all you post about. This can be automated with services like dlvr.it or plugins you can add to your platform. If these links are going to be the only thing you post to these streams, don’t do it.
- Write a summary of your post with links for Google+. Handcraft your post summaries that link to your new content and hand post them to Google+. These guys control what is indexed, and they naturally favor stuff that is on one of their web components.
- Take part in blogging events that appeal to you. Nablopomo, Blogging from A to Z, blog carnivals, blog hops and scads of other events, circles, memes and linky event.
- Check that your RSS feed works. Just saying.
- Write guest posts on blogs whose topics relate to yours. Maybe they will write guest posts for you too.
I’ve started practicing what I preach and in the last month or so I’ve picked up 70 valid Twitter followers and seen my visitor stats double with time on site remaining a pleasingly long time. I don’t want exponential growth. I want good steady growth. As I round up readers from previous blogs, don’t forget to put a post or widget on your old sites telling those readers where they can now find you, my readership here on my consolidated blog grows.
Slow, steady, and informed wins the race.